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Wake Up Call: Lawyers On Demand Enters US Via New York Office

Sept. 28, 2022, 12:23 PM

In today’s column, law firms could face backlash over their return-to-office mandates; a former Dentons associate is accused of inflating by more than tenfold the time he spent on a discovery project; US Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas failed to report his wife’s substantial earnings over a five-year period, a report says.

  • Leading off, London-based alternative legal services provider Lawyers On Demand said that with its partner legal tech consultancy SYKE it has opened its first US office in New York. They said the new office will allow them to better serve their US corporate clients, which include major tech, media and energy companies.
  • Lawyers on Demand started out as a lawyers-for-rent service and later launched a law firm staffed by former in-house counsel. In the US, Lawyers on Demand said it will provide in-house legal departments with a flexible offering of attorneys, while SYKE will provide managed services and legal operations consultancy. (LODLaw.com)
  • As more law firms announce post-pandemic policies requiring employees to return to the office, two new surveys show the firms could face backlash from young lawyers and staff. (American Lawyer) A report from London finds partners exasperated with “unreasonable” demands from junior attorneys. (Law.com International) Meanwhile, a new survey report from legal tech group BigHand finds most law firms have inconsistent hybrid working policies for lawyers and support staff. (BigHand)
  • An Illinois ethics complaint accuses a former Dentons associate of claiming he spent 277 hours to review 425 documents on a client’s discovery request, when he’d actually only reviewed 20 of the documents. (ABA Journal)

Lawyers, Law Firms

  • US Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas failed to report on his disclosure forms hundreds of thousands of dollars his wife earned from a conservative think tank for over the last five years, according to a report citing watchdog group Common Cause. (L.A. Times)
  • As companies face mounting pressure from investors, clients, consumers, and campaigners to carry out business with integrity and transparency, their senior in-house lawyers are increasingly tasked with satisfying these demands as a business’s voice of conscience. (Financial Times)
  • The Lawyer has an interview with former Orrick partner Keily Blair, who was London head of the firm’s cyber, privacy & data innovation. She’s now chief strategy and operations officer of adult content website OnlyFans (The Lawyer)

Laterals, Moves, In-house

  • Goodwin snagged Reed Smith government contracts and compliance lawyer Liza Craig as a partner in its global trade practice in Washington; management-side worklaw firm Littler added two former DLA Piper employment attorneys in San Diego from Ricketts Case. Merrili Escue, who was at Littler earlier in her career and later at Morrison Foerster and DLA, returns to Littler as a shareholder. Nancy Kawano, who spent close to 25 years at DLA, joins as senior counsel; Morrison Foerster picked up Kirkland & Ellis employment and labor attorney Michael Schulman as a partner working from Washington and New York; Hunton Andrews Kurth promoted Richmond, Virginia-based capital markets and blockchain attorney Mayme Donohue to counsel. (HuntonAK.com)
  • The Aerospace Corp., a federally funded space research center, hired Glenn McKeown, top lawyer at US Department of Energy research center Argonne National Laboratory, as its new senior vice president, general counsel and secretary based in Washington; the US Department of Commerce announced former O’Melveny & Myers partner Zoë Baird as a senior counselor to Secretary Gina Raimondo. Recently CEO and President at Markle Foundation, Baird was earlier top lawyer and executive at Aetna Life & Casualty Company and counselor at General Electric. (Commerce.com)
  • Vorys, a 375-lawyer Columbus, Ohio-based firm, announced it opened it’s first international office in London as part of a plan to expand its e-commerce brand control practice; Epstein Becker Green said it’s moving its one-year old Columbus, Ohio, office into new premises in the city’s Arena District after a multimillion dollar renovation. (Epstein Becker Green)

To contact the correspondent on this story: Rick Mitchell in Paris at rMitchell@correspondent.bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Chris Opfer in New York at copfer@bloomberglaw.com; Darren Bowman at dbowman@bloomberglaw.com